I must be one of the few people who doesn't think it's all that expensive to show a dog, and no I'm not rich. I live in central alabama, and I have to drive usually to Atlanta or thereabouts to show. That's about a 2 hour drive. Each show I enter with 1 dog costs between $15 and $25. There's only 1 show a day, and unless the city is within an hour from where I live, I only enter 1 show a weekend. (usually there's 1 show each on friday, saturday, and sunday at any given location). All shows have a entry deadline of about 2 1/2 weeks before the show, so to me, because Im spending the money to enter the show, and spending the money to go to the show at 2 seperate times, it doesn't seem like it costs me all that much. I'd say with all expences involved, for me to go to one of the atlanta shows costs me about $40 total (more if I buy souvenirs or dog supplies at the show ;). I could spend way more at the mall and not have nearly as much fun.
to reply to a post on another thread, it's true not all people showing their dogs are the best breeders. that's why you visit the home, find out how many litters they have each year, do they breed the females in back to back heats, find out how many dogs they have, find out where the puppies are raised. and pay attention to what the breeder wants to find out about you.
I am including travel (gas), hotels and the extra money they usually charge for pets, eating out, many grooming supplies, crates, tables, sometimes babysitters if I don't bring kids. The entry fee is nothing. It can get very expensive. I guess it depends on where you live, how close to shows. If your really campaigning a dog...there is almost always overnight travel.
Well the grooming supplies you have in advance, so I don't really count those. IMHO if you live near a large city it's much much easier to show a dog cheaply, becuase you don't have to get the hotel room. Living 2 hours away from Atlanta, there's practically a major every month there. Not to mention the smaller shows that take place in Alabama and other parts of GA.
Although there have been enough posts to thoroughly answer your question(s), I will give you my 2 cents regarding breeders. In my capacity as a SON of a mother who is a complete dog-lover, I have come in contact with a few breeders of various dogs. [For the sake of brevity, it'll try to keep it short.] GERMAN SHEPHARD DOG - BREEDER We got a german shephard dog when I was about 13. We visited the breeder and her dogs, and the walk-away feeling was quite impressive! The dog however, was not. It was certainly inbred, and at 3 years, weighed approximately 45 pounds. Ugh, what a nightmare. GERMAN SHEPHARD DOG - RESCUE We got this dog through the GS rescue, and it was probably the best dog we have ever owned. Impressive in stature and composition, lovable, very intelligent, and very "watch and guard"-ful, I highly recommend looking at "rescue" dogs before considering a breeder. GREAT DANE - BREEDER What a f*ck*ng mess. This dog, very well defined and quite possibly the material for a winning show dog, has some psychological problems. It's going on 1 yr old, and it still romps around the house like a puppy. Adding to that, it has persistent bladder problems. Ugh. If it only camled down a little and didn't have urinary tract problems - it would be a VERY good dog. Moral of the story? It's hit or miss. So g'luck. -- Lou
Regardless of how much it costs, it is still important to show. As mentioned before by most of the posters already, responsible breeders care about improving the breed through careful breeding practices. The culmalation of this effort is proven by 'showing the dog'. If you are not improving your breed then ask the breeder why are you breeding????
There are some great posts on this thread. Thanks, Sunny, Pearl, rarelamb. Showing dogs is expensive when you travel and have to add in hotels, gas, eating out, etc. We have lots of shows in western Washington and I don't have to travel far to find majors. I do travel up and down the west coast, though, and to regional and national specialties. It's good to see dogs throughout the country and to network with other breeders. All of that travel does add up but it also gives me a much better feel for our breed than if I simply stayed in my own backyard. Frostygirl, regarding msg #17: My pet puppies can boast of top champions from England, Australia and the US in their pedigrees but that doesn't mean that they're of sufficient quality to be bred. Only dogs that have proven themselves in the show ring should be bred. If she can't afford to show, she can't afford to breed.
Sunny- it's true that not all show people are good breeders and I completely intend to meet the person and go to her house, but I think that what's important about showing and champion dogs is they are most likely going to produce dogs as close to the standard as possible and as true to the breed. That's the only reason I care if they are in show or not.